Penrith. The Toffee Shop

It may have an unassuming presence but over the last 100 years or so royalty, musicians, film stars and politicians have all beaten a path to Neil and Pat Boustead’s shop or had the trademark boxes - white, with gold edging and black lettering - delivered to their homes. 

Walk through the front door and to the right of the counter you’ll see several photographs of Prince Charles when he visited the shop in 2003, a couple of him stirring one of eight brass fudge pans with a wooden spoon. The pans are still in use today.

A dresser displays some of the packaging for the different places that The Toffee Shop supplies, including Fortnum and Mason in London, the Highgrove Shop in Gloucestershire, Holyrood House in Edinburgh, Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle. The blue china is a little memory of a Mrs A Furnass who started the business all those years ago. She loved to collect it.

The fudge is hand made in small batches from butter, sugar and milk and comes in three flavours: butter, chocolate and mint. After cooking, the mixture is cooled and then cut by hand into slabs. 

A little more force is used for the toffee which is made with sugar, butter and syrup or black treacle. Having cooled in trays, it’s broken up with a hammer and the pieces (flavours of butter or treacle) then individually wrapped. The recipes for both are, of course. a closely guarded secret. 

The Toffee Shop, 7 Brunswick Road, CA11 7LU: 01768 862008, www.thetoffeeshop.co.uk 

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